Thermal and Chlorophyll-Fluorescence Imaging Distinguish Plant-Pathogen Interactions at an Early Stage

Chaerle, L and et al, . (2004) Thermal and Chlorophyll-Fluorescence Imaging Distinguish Plant-Pathogen Interactions at an Early Stage. Plant and Cell Physiology, 45 (7). pp. 887-896.

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Different biotic stresses yield specific symptoms, owing to their distinct influence on a plant’s physiological status. To monitor early changes in a plant’s physiological status upon pathogen attack, chlorophyll fluorescence imaging (Chl-FI) and thermography, which respectively visualize photosynthetic efficiency and transpiration, were carried out in parallel for two fundamentally different plant–pathogen interactions. These non-destructive imaging techniques were able to visualize infections at an early stage, before damage appeared. Under growth-room conditions, a robotized set-up captured time series of visual, thermal and chlorophyll fluorescence images from infected regions on attached leaves. As a first symptom of the plant–virus interaction between resistant tobacco and tobacco mosaic virus (TMV), thermal imaging detected a local rise in temperature while Chl-FI monitored a co-localized increase in fluorescence intensity. Chl-FI also revealed pre-symptomatic high-intensity spots for the plant–fungus system sugar beet–Cercospora beticola. Concomitantly, spots of lower temperature were monitored with thermography, in marked contrast with our observations on TMV-infection in tobacco. Knowledge of disease signatures for different plant–pathogen interactions could allow early identification of emerging biotic stresses in crops, facilitating the containment of disease outbreaks. Presymptomatic monitoring clearly opens perspectives for quantitative screening for disease resistance, either on excised leaf pieces or attached leaves.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This research was supported by grants from the Fund for Scientific Research (Flanders) (G0015-01 to DVDS and RV). L.C. is a postdoctoral research assistant of the Fund for Scientific Research (Flanders). D.H. is a post-doc with financial support provided through the European Community’s Human Potential Programme under contract HPRN-CT-2002-00254, STRESSIMAGING. The authors are grateful to Martin Ghillemyn for the use of thermal cameras, and Christian Hermans for help with the PEA fluorescence measurements.
Author Affiliation: Department of Molecular Genetics, Unit Hormone Signalling and Bio-imaging, Ghent University, K.L. Ledeganckstraat 35, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium
Subjects: Plant Production
Plant Physiology and Biochemistry > Plant Physiology
Divisions: General
Depositing User: Mr. SanatKumar Behera
Date Deposited: 03 Feb 2012 05:54
Last Modified: 03 Feb 2012 05:55
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